Tulsa to Become a “Compassionate Community”

The Tulsa Interfaith Alliance has been working with the City of Tulsa’s Human Rights Commission for the past year on a process to have Tulsa recognized as a “Compassionate Community” by the International Charter for Compassion Committee.  A resolution to that effect will be presented to the Tulsa City Council at the June 25 Council meeting in the Council Chambers at City Hall, 175 East 2nd St.
The resolution, if adopted, would declare Tulsa to be a “Compassionate Community” and authorize the on-going work of the Human Rights Commission in raising awareness of compassion, and highlighting opportunities for individuals and groups to be involved in compassionate action.  After adoption by the City Council and approval by the Mayor, Tulsa will become the first community in the state of Oklahoma to be recognized as a “Compassionate Community.”
“This has been a multi-year project of the Tulsa Interfaith Alliance, and we are excited about reaching this major milestone,” said Rev. Bob Lawrence, Executive Director of the Tulsa Interfaith Alliance.  “But our work is not done.  We have committed to being a part of a 10-year strategy that will seek to raise an awareness of compassion in Tulsa.”
Following adoption of the resolution by the City Council, Mayor Dewey F Bartlett, Jr. has called a press conference for Monday, June 29.  Here is a copy of the press release from the Mayor’s office:
Date:  June 15, 2015
Release: #15-123
Contact: Lara Weber, Communications Dept, (918) 596-7804
A ‘Compassionate Community’:  Tulsa to Adopt Resolution Affirming International Charter of Compassion
Mayor Dewey F Bartlett, Jr. and the Tulsa City Council are adopting a join resolution affirming the message of the International Charter for Compassion, designating the City of Tulsa as a “Compassionate Community.”  A news conference for this announcement will be held at 10am, Monday, June 29, in the 15th Floor boardroom of the City Hall, 175 E. 2nd St.

“Adopting this resolution as a city confirms our commitment to living out compassion in all aspects of life,” Mayor Dewey Bartlett said.  “Tulsa is already known as a friendly and welcoming city and compassion will continue to promote peace and attract a diverse population that already makes Tulsa very unique.”

The Tulsa Human Rights Commission has been working with the Tulsa Interfaith Alliance to have Tulsa recognized as an International Compassionate Community.  These two organizations have created a “Partnership for a Compassionate Tulsa” that will be responsible for developing and overseeing a 10-year implementation strategy involving business, education, health, civic, neighborhood and faith organizations and individuals.

Andrea C Walker, PhD, Vice-Chair of the Human Rights Commission and member of the Commission’s interfaith subcommittee, stated, “The Charter for Compassion represents what we as a commission desire for Tulsa, placing the Golden Rule and avoidance of harm to others at the center of our decisions about governance, business, education, housing, and numerous other sectors.”

The Charter for Compassion was unveiled to international acclaim by British interfaith scholar Karen Armstrong on Nov. 12, 2009.  The event was commemorated in Tulsa on Nov. 15, 2009, with an interfaith celebration at Boston Avenue United Methodist Church.

The purpose of the Human Rights Commission is to received, hear and investigate complaints arising from acts or practices of discrimination.  Commissioners are appointed by the Mayor and approved by the City Council.

The Tulsa Interfaith Alliance is a non-partisan, faith-based advocacy group that works diligently to maintain the separation of church and state, to address issues of unconstitutional religious expression, and to raise awareness of the greater good that people of all faiths, and no faith, bring to society.
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